Castle Rock, CO

DougCo schools opt-in to free lunch program

Suzie Glassman

By Suzie Glassman/NewsBreak Denver

(Castle Rock, CO) DougCo superintendent Erin Kane said the district will opt-in to proposition FF.

Colorado voters overwhelmingly approved the initiative to provide free lunches to all students regardless of income, but district participation was optional.

“The benefits of the program are amazing,” said Kane. “It ensures our kids will be able to get a hot lunch if they want, and our students who already get free lunch can avoid any stigma related to the free and reduced lunch program.”

Kane also said she is delighted that families with food insecurity will have access to free meals.

“Based on our experience during COVID, we’re expecting demand to double,” she said. Her staff is working through the implications of that, especially when the district is experiencing a staffing shortage.

Kane also said districts continue to face supply chain shortages for nutritional items, so the district is making sure it has backup plans should supply become an issue.

“We’re also discussing how we can make sure to get all kids through the line with enough time to eat before the lunch period ends,” she said. District-authorized charter schools can participate, but it's up to the individual school to opt in.

The program will start at the beginning of the 2023-2024 school year.

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I'm a reporter covering the Douglas County School District in Colorado.

Denver, CO

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